#1
Hi all! I know a lot of scales, but am not 100% sure what style of music I should incorporate them into... Could you give me a general idea as to what style of music I should use each of the following scales/modes in:

Harmonic Minor
Melodic Minor
Pentatonic Major
Ionian
Phrygian
Dorian
Aeonlian
Lydian
Mixolydian
Locrian

Thanks guys, hope you can help me out!
#2
Well the last six are modes, so any...
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#3
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Hi all! I know a lot of scales, but am not 100% sure what style of music I should incorporate them into... Could you give me a general idea as to what style of music I should use each of the following scales/modes in:

Harmonic Minor
Melodic Minor
Pentatonic Major
Ionian
Phrygian
Dorian
Aeonlian
Lydian
Mixolydian
Locrian

Thanks guys, hope you can help me out!


Harmonic minor is a convention in which the v chord of a minor key is made major (V) due to the major 7th in the harmonic minor scale to allow for a perfect cadence. It is also used in neoclasical rock (think Yngwie).

The ascending form of melodic minor is used when ascending a minor scale in classical music. It makes a smoother transition when ascending due to the leading note wanting to move up by a half step to the tonic note. When descending the natural minor scale is used. The ascending form can also be harmonized to offer a wider choice of chords for minor harmony, although augmented chords formed from this scale are rarely used in classical music and more in jazz acting as a dominant or passing chord.

All the rest are covered in the mode sticky at the top of this forum.
Last edited by griffRG7321 at Nov 12, 2009,
#4
I use harmonic minor mostly with the 5th degree of the scale,
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#5
The genre of music you're playing isn't the deciding factor for what scales you use. Some scales are used commonly in certain genres (metal songs often use phrygian, jazz uses melodic minor, and dorian frequently) but you play a scale based on what's being played behind it, at least if you're adhering to traditional melodic rules. For example, a D dorian scale compared to a D major scale has a b3 and a b7 degree. 3's and 7's are the notes that mostly strongly indicate the quality of a chord; b3 makes it minor, b7 makes it dominant, so you could play a D dorian scale over a Dm7 chord, making sure to emphasize those two notes, and it would be melodically sound, if a little predictable. You wouldn't play D lydian though, for example, because it has a natural 3, and a natural 7, which wouldn't coincide with the m7 quality of the chord. Get it?

Of course there are exceptions and stuff, and you can add chromatic notes and other things like that to make it sound outside or "jazzy" but that's a basic way of looking at it.
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#6
Don't worry about modes right now, at this point they aren't useful (by all means look at them again later when you have a solid grasp of major and minor tonality).

The two contexts you will be playing in are in a major key or in a minor key. Some styles will have one of these more than the other (eg, metal is more often minor, regae is more often major) but almost all styles will have both at some point. For major keys, the major scale is usually used and for minor scales a combination of the three minor scales are used.

However, these scales will give you a set of notes to work with but you have to think about more than just the scale when writing a melody/solo. Think about the chord underneath and what notes will sound good/give a certain feel to it. Also, if you are finding these scales boring, learning new scales is often not the answer, instead you can experiment with more chromaticism by using notes that are not in the scale (again, here you want to take the chords underneath into acount).
#7
thanks for the help guys, useful stuff

still really looking for what scales/modes are commonly used for genres though. I know you can pretty much do what you want, especially throwing in chromatic notes etc to spice things up, but am just curious what you guys use/what is commonly used for say; blues, jazz, classic rock, metal, classical etc etc. Instrumental touched on this.

But all the help is appreciated, however I do have a pretty good grasp on music theory already...
#8
It's not really a case of what scale fits what genre, it doesn't work that way. You simply choose a scale that fits over whatever it is you're playing over based on the chords and other instruments.
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